Originally Posted by patteeu
First of all, we don't know what kind of threat to national security this was unless we take the administration's word for it. Second, we don't know that they tried enough more reasonable, non-press-chilling approaches.
For just one example of how they went beyond necessary, why did they need to seize these records secretly? Why couldn't they have accomplished the same thing while informing the AP that they were doing it? It's not like the AP has the ability to delete their phone records.
We don't need to take the administration's word for it, they didn't even reveal all the damage that the leak caused, the British did. They had the compromised asset and were pissed at the Americans for the leak.
What is the point of informing the AP about it beforehand? It does absolutely nothing except potentially tip off the leaker that he may soon be caught, giving him a chance to cover any tracks he may have left lying about.